RIDERS of all ages and abilities came together over the weekend for the 2020 Cardiac Challenge, with one local rider being a cardiac patient himself.
At the relatively young age of 44, Mike Valle was doing a regular mountain bike ride around Atherton in 2019 when he began to feel a tightness in his chest.
A doctor friend suggested he get it checked out and an angiogram in Cairns Hospital discovered multiple blockages in his cardiac arteries.
This resulted in a series of stents being inserted to open them up, and on his way into the theatre Mr Valle got an idea.
“It was when they wheeled me into the theatre that they took me past the big Cardiac Challenge sign and I said to the nurse – when I am better, I am going to do that,” he said.
Do that he did as he signed up to ride in the 2020 QSuper Cardiac Challenge helping to fundraise for the service that saved his life.
“It’s my own little way of giving back to the hospital that helped me and gave me a second chance in life,” Mr Valle said.
Far North Queensland Hospital Foundation Fundraising and Marketing Manager Glenys Duncombe said this year’s event would be slightly different to previous years, but passionate fundraisers were working hard towards their goal.
“With the logistical challenges we’ve faced this year due to COVID-19, having QSuper as our major sponsor is a critical component and it will enable every single dollar raised to go directly to cardiac care in the Far North,” she said.
“There’s been a lot more work in organising this year’s event, but when you hear stories like Mike’s, you know it’s all worthwhile to make a difference to patient outcomes.”
The 2020 QSuper Cardiac Challenge smashed their $240,000 goal with them raising over $270,000 for cardiac services in the region.